Past Week "Hot" In Buckeye State
Jibreel Black -Big Ten Bound
Jibreel Black -Big Ten Bound
Midwest Recruiting Analyst
Posted Jul 6, 2009
dave berk


The past week has been a busy one as several Ohio prospects made their verbal pledges to colleges. Scout.com looks at each of these commitments.

The week got off to a really hot start and a big one for Big Ten member Indiana as they pulled in one of the top prospects from the Buckeye state.

Jibreel Black (Wyoming/Ohio) followed in his brother Larry’s footsteps by pledging to Indiana last Monday. While it looked like Jibreel was looking towards another Big Ten program his heart was in keeping things in the family.

“Having my brother Larry (Black) at Indiana played a big part in me making my final decision. Larry was there for me early in high school and I look forward to him being part of what I do in college.”

Black will have a chance to be an impact player at IU from the day he reports.

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While Jibreel Black was a major 4-star prospect Tyler Obringer (Spencerville/Ohio) went under the radar finding Mid-American Conference teams with lots of interest.

In the end Ball State was the winner and first year head coach Stan Parrish is off to a fast start for the Class of 2010.

Obringer is a 6-foot-3, 290-pound interior offensive lineman.

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Wide receiver Chase Cochran was a lot like Obringer as he was going under the radar but with lots of interest since running a 10.68 – 100 during track season.

With offers from several Mid American Conference teams and interest from Vanderbilt, Cincinnati, Indiana and Northwestern, Cochran found a coaching staff that gave him what he was looking for at Ohio University.

“I’d gone to Ohio for a couple of visits and really loved what Coach Frank Solich is doing with the program. The campus is great and the university is improving their facilities with an indoor facility. They also have my major and a wide receivers coach who is one of the top in the country in Coach Dwayne Dixon who has played in the NFL and sent a lot of players there over the years. I look forward to learning from him to improve my game.”

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Quarterback Luke Massa (Cincinnati/Ohio/St. Xavier) made the choice to stay home after pledging with the Big East Champions over Wisconsin.

The 6-foot-4, 175-pound signal caller has the physical size Brian Kelly looks for in his quarterbacks and is already running a spread offense much like the Bearcats.

Many feel Massa’s pledge could help the Bearcats in their pursuit of high school teammate Matt James.

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Kicker Drew Basil (Chillicothe/Ohio) knows kickers don’t often get scholarship offers. But not only did Basil pickup several offers he got the one he’s dreamed of in Ohio State.

It didn’t take Basil long to pledge as he had set up a visit the moment he spoke with the Buckeyes.

That visit sealed the deal as Basil pledged the day of his unofficial visit.

“I was looking at all five offers and didn’t really have a favorite school. But today was the day and after seeing what Ohio State had to offer I knew they had what I was looking for as an athlete and student.”

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Another of Ohio’s top quarterbacks came off the board as Caleb Watkins (Middletown/Ohio) ended his recruiting issuing a pledge to Bowling Green.

Watkins (6-foot-3, 194-pounds) was one of the top performers at the Scout.com Combine stop in Cincinnati this past spring and held several offers along with interest from Cincinnati. With Luke Massa’s pledge to the Bearcats the Middies signal caller wasted little time making the call to the Falcons staff.

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Ending the week was another Scout.com 3-star prospect as Matt Rotheram pulled the trigger with his pledge to Pittsburgh.

Rotheram (6-foot-6, 310-pounds) gave the Panthers a big haul after their camps had ended and found the partnership between the university and the NFL Steelers to his liking.

Rotheram told Dale Grdnic of Panthers Digest the following about the Super Bowl Champions and Panthers.

"It's a really nice campus,'' Rotheram said. "They share their facilities with the Steelers, which is awesome. (And) I love the relationship Pitt has with the Steelers. It's pretty special, and I don't think you see that anywhere else.”

At this time Ohio has 43 prospects having issued verbal pledges to Division One programs. Many more will be coming in the coming weeks and months and Scout.com will have you covered.



Related Stories
Rotheram Is No. 12 For Pitt
 -by PantherDigest.com  Jul 5, 2009
Watkins Down to Two
 -by RocketDigest.com  Jul 2, 2009
Black Goes In-Depth About IU Decision
 -by AllHoosiers.com  Jun 29, 2009

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DE Jibreel Black (profile)
OL Matt Rotheram (profile)
QB Caleb Watkins (profile)
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